Luke Littler held the miniature version of the World Cup trophy in his hands and looked heartbroken. The lost World Cup final caused a lot of trouble for the 16-year-old super talent on the largest darts stage in the world in London.
"Every game before was good, but this one annoyed me. Congratulations to Luke Humphries, he deserves it," said Littler after the 4-7 defeat against his compatriot. The young Englishman was leading 4-2 and missed the chance to make it 5-2. Then the game ended.
Praise from Humphries
After the confetti shower at Alexandra Palace, the new world champion and world number one Humphries spoke at least as much about his rival as about himself. "He's going to dominate darts. He's an incredible player. He's an incredible talent. I had to win this today because Luke will win a lot of them in the future, I'm sure," said the 28-year-old Humphries.
Debutant Littler had previously won six World Cup games in a row, including against former world champions Rob Cross (6:2) and Raymond van Barneveld (4:1). Humphries openly called for Littler to be given one of the eight coveted Premier League spots. "He's one of the best players in the world," Humphries said.
The lucky winner added in a TV interview on Sky Sports: "Luke is an incredible talent. It's not just about the sport, but also his demeanor. He's mastered it all brilliantly. You won't find another 16-year-old who who is so grounded." The teenager is being advised by record world champion Phil Taylor and will be competing in many important tournaments for the first time in 2024 with a so-called tour card.